WWF: NASCAR

I was minding my own business, drinking a nice hot cup of hot chocolate last night when I hear my mother say, “Ut oh. They were fighting at the race, again.” I reply, “Again?! Who was it this time?” Immediately we both began to search social media for answers.

A few weeks ago, after watching the finish of the Bank of America 500 in Charlotte, cameras were fixated on Brad Keslowski and Matt Kenseth. According to Kenseth, Keslowski immediately drove him into a wall during a restart. The damage to the car caused Kenseth to drop out of the top five and settle for a 19th place finish. With two laps to go, Kenseth retaliated by swerving into Keslowski. Following the finish, as the cars rolled down Pit Road, a still bitter Keslowski hit Kenseth, again, with his car. When both players exited their vehicles, words were exchanged while members of their respective crews tried to separate the two. A few minutes later, cameras are once again on Keslowski as he is walking alone between two trailers. Suddenly, like a thief in the night, Kenseth storms down the alley and proceeds to put Keslowski in a headlock.

As a reward, Keslowski was fined $50,000. Kenseth received no fine.

I do not even feel like sorting out yesterday’s fight that involved Jeff Gordon and yep, Keslowski. Young man stays brawling.

NASCAR is a very popular sport. It is a sport that I happen to love but I have noticed something. For all the brawls that have taken place over the years, there is a never a major uproar about them. Sure, I hear people talking about Tony Stewart and the Busch brothers all the time. One would think with the amount of swinging and intentional crashing that has been taking place on the speedway, we would hear more about the “violent” NASCAR drivers. Oh wait, we are talking NASCAR which means it is ok for drivers to have melees on occasion because it is part of the sport.

One has to wonder though? What makes their fights any different from the ones I have seen in the NFL? Or the NBA? Baseball is known for its bench clearing brawls but these are seemingly welcomed just as much as the seventh inning stretch its.

So I am left to ponder. Is there a double standard when it comes to fighting in certain professional sports? Oh wait. I do not need to ponder. I know the answer.

 

Until next time…TOODELLS.

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So you got cramps, aye?

Last night’s Game 1 of the NBA Finals was one of the best NBA games I have seen in a very long time. From the tip, the game proved to be nothing short of exciting, nail biting and intense. The Spurs and Heat traded baskets, swapped leads several times and got real wide eyed almost every time a foul was called as if it was impossible for them to foul. A game that was too close to call for much of the night quickly took a turn when the game’s leading scorer, LeBron James, had to leave the floor due to severe cramps. His exit sparked a 16-3 run by the Spurs who rode that momentum to a Game 1 win.

However, the talk today is not about how two teams battled until the end. The talk is not about how dominant 38 year old Tim Duncan was. The talk is not about how bench players played significant roles in which side of the column that team finished on. The talk is about cramps. Yes, cramps. You know those things that athletes tend to get. Yeah, those. The AT&T Center was more reminiscent of a sauna last night than a basketball arena as the electrical system charged with supplying juice to the arena malfunctioned. The temperature in the area soared above 90 degrees. Players were seen wringing out their uniforms and placing ice packs on their necks to keep cool. Fans tapped into their creative side and made fans out of signs that were passed out before the game. Via Twitter, former NBA players compared last night’s experience to playing in the Boston Garden. 

Who cares about all of that though when the league’s best player is unable to finish the game due to cramps. With a little under four minutes to play, James hobbled off the court plagued by a condition he has suffered from before. When he left, I knew it was coming. I knew the tweets would start. I knew what the comparison would be. I prepped myself to hear it. “MJ played through the flu. You mean to tell me he can’t play through cramps.” For years, James has been criticized for what many have called a lack of killer instinct. So for him to exit last night just added more fuel to the fire that was already hot.

All I could do was laugh. It was obvious that everyone who was tweeting, chatting and flapping their gums had NEVER experienced severe cramps. I do not care how tough you are mentally or physically, a severe cramp especially in your leg or foot, will send you into limp noodle status quick. I saw all kinds of ridiculousness. People accusing James of not being a well conditioned athlete because he cramped. Say what now? I must assume these people have not been watching him play for the last 11 years. Those that have been watching obviously do not understand how this cramping thing works. Seeing that it is Friday and I am in a good mood, let me break it down for you.

Cramps can occur as a result of a number of factors. Muscle fatigue,  dehydration, low potassium, low sodium and electrolyte disturbance. Exposure to large changes in temperature can also cause cramping. A person with a large amount of lean muscle is more susceptible to cramping. Have you ever watched a track meet? Exactly.  The combination of the temperature in the arena, James’ profuse sweating which caused the electrolyte disturbance(your muscle cells will begin to shrink) and the fact that he received no IV’s during the game(which still baffles me since this not the first time he has had to exit a game due to cramping) is why James was unable to finish the game. HE COULD NOT PLAY. If he had received IV’s during the game, this probably would have not been an issue. The trainer, team doctor, coach, somebody needs to answer for that foolishness.

So there you have it. You can call him soft, a wuss, whatever. Let one of those cramps catch you. I bet you will be calling on Jesus. Trust me. I know.

 

Until next time…TOODELLS.

 

P.S. Even in my defense of LBJ, I have to admit that the pictures of people LeBronin last night left me in chuckles. #NoChill

A Defining Moment…

Ya’ll know I have been itching to blog about this, right? I do not know which part of me was more anxious, my PR white hat or my sports management persona.

LIFETIME BAN. Those words echoed through my ears yesterday as I watched NBA Commissioner Adam Silver grab a hold of his early defining moment. Having only been on the job less than three months, Silver’s leadership was thrust into the international spotlight when taped conversations surfaced between Los Angeles Clippers owner and his archivist/assistant/ girlfriend/other woman/ Vanessa Stiviano, where Sterling expressed his thoughts about the black race. The conversation, in true WWE fashion, was no holds barred. If you had any questions about how Sterling felt about people with brown skin tones, he provided you with the answers you had been seeking.

The internet lit up. So did ESPN. CNN. So did barbershops. Churches. Checkout lines. How could an obvious racist own a team that has a roster loaded with black players, in a league loaded with black players? What will the players do? Should they play or not? Wait, this is not the first time Sterling has been deemed racist, is it? Lets see, he was sued by the U.S. Department of Justice for housing discrimination. Lets see, he was sued by NBA Hall of Famer, Elgin Baylor, for employee discrimination. No need to be surprised. The pattern has been there.

Silver issued what he thought was a just punishment. He dropped the hammer, nails, wrenches, screwdrivers, pliers and whatever else he could find in the tool box In his NBA, racism will not be tolerated, as it has been in the past. Yeah, I am looking at you David Stern. It did not stop there. Silver ordered Sterling to pay a fine of $2.5 million dollars and urged the other owners in the NBA to exercise their constitutional rights and vote Sterling out as owner of the Clippers.

The internet lit up. #Bannedforlife trended number one for hours. My social media feeds were full of opinions and discussions and the Clippers made their own statement by simply changing their website to a black screen with the phrase “We Are One” boldly situated in the middle of the screen above their logo. As the players and the league begins its healing process, the push to have Sterling removed continues. As the fans continue to attend games and purchase merchandise, Sterling’s pockets continue to get fatter. And this is a hot topic. I have encountered many whom seem to think that in the end Sterling wins because he is a billionaire and he is set to add to his fortune if he is forced to sale.

Now I am no millionaire. I am not even close but one thing I am certain of is that the one thing that most people who have his type of money crave more than anything is the power that comes along with it. Just look at the list of names of people who are rumored to interested in purchasing the Clippers: Oprah, Floyd Mayweather, Matt Damon, Dave Geffen, Larry Ellison, Rick Ross, Diddy, Oscar De La Hoya, the list goes on. None of these people are struggling. None of these people are in dire need of money. None of these people go out and pay their bills at the office like I do. The money they have has given them a power that most of us will never attain. Of course, $2.5 million dollars will be no big deal to Sterling but I am willing to bet my pennies that being him being stripped of his power will definitely have an effect on that ego of his.

This was defining moment for the NBA. The players will be criticized for years to come for playing, essentially for Sterling, one day after finding out how he truly feels about them. Although, I am willing to once again bet my pennies and say those players had some type of inkling that Sterling was not a fan of brown skinned people. Money talks.

I applaud Adam Silver for his swift and thorough action regarding this situation. He did not have to choose this route but he did and for that he should be commended. We will never erase racism but we do not have to tolerate it. Job well done, Commissioner.

 

Until next time…TOODELLS. WE ARE ONE.

 

{Source: Clippers website}
{Source: Clippers website}

 

The NBA has a new poster!

Twitter was all abuzz last night when the Los Angeles Clippers DeAndre Jordan made the Detroit Pistons Brandon Knight the newest trend.

In case you missed why, here you go…

Of course with any good posterization, you have to start looking at others. So I have provided links to some of my all time favorites. I am pretty sure nothing will ever replace Vince Carter’s dunk over 7’2 Frederic Weis in the 2000 Olympics. I mean really? Dude never stood a chance. And the leg shake after the dunk…classic. I am also pretty sure that up until this point there has never been a more disrespectful posterization than Scottie Pippen over Patrick Ewing. The dunk was nasty. The stare down he gave Ewing was nasty. And the fact that he made a beeline to Spike Lee’s courtside seat to let him know just how nasty his dunk was and how he felt about the Knicks was the cherry on top. Enjoy!!!

Enough already!!

If I have to hear the analysts on ESPN discuss LeBron James entering the NBA dunk contest on mo’ time, I am going to scream!!! I might as well get prepared because I know it is coming.

Before the All-Star game, there were complaints from analysts and fans about the lack of “star” power in the dunk contest. During the contest there were complaints, which were warranted, about the lack of “star” power and creative dunks. After the contest, the same thing. However, this has gotten out of hand. Last week, Earvin “Magic” Johnson, created a big stir when he offered James one million dollars to enter the contest. Yep, one million dollars. To dunk. Since then the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Kevin Durant has sweetened the pot by adding $1000, ESPN’s Michael Wilbon has offered up another thousand and ESPN First Take’s great debater Skip Bayless is willing to put in $2,000. Seriously?? The dunk contest is 11 months away!!!! I do not want to hear about this until next February.

Furthermore, why all this pressure to get James to dunk? If he does not want to dunk, that is his prerogative. People are acting like he owes it to us to dunk. He does not. People act like they are surprised the “stars” do not want to participate in the contest. To me the lack of “star” power in the contest is reflective of the NBA itself, watered down. Between the flopping, lack of defense, me-first attitudes and Twitter beefs, the NBA, in my opinion has been on a downhill slope for years. So it does not surprise me when the stars use All-Star weekend to socialize, rest and Instagram pictures. The league is reflective of the generation that is represented in it.

Up until a few weeks ago, I have never been real impressed with James’ creative dunking ability. He is strong and that is reflective of the force in which he throws down his dunks. However, James has been putting on a show in the pre-game warmups with his own personal dunk contest. I have seen a few dunks that are contest worthy and probably would have won the contest for him this year. Wait, I am getting like the analysts. Let me stop. Catch me next February. We can revisit this topic over hot chocolate. For all of you who are craving a great dunk contest, just do what I did, watch the 2000 dunk contest. Best one ever. Two words. Vince Carter.

Enjoy!!! Until next time….TOODELLS!!

Round of applause…

I have been debating all morning about which topic I want to write about, Oscar Pistorious or Danica Patrick. I woke up this morning and saw that Oscar was trending on Twitter so I was leaning towards that until I watched ESPN First Take. One of the topics of debate was Danica. There has been a lot of chatter about Danica not deserving the “hype” surrounding her.

I agree that Danica has gotten a lot of publicity and “hype” that is typically reserved for those who have proven over a period of time that they are winners. I agree that a lot of the “hype” stems from the fact that she is a pretty woman and in our society women are typically judged on how they look, first, before they are even recognized for their abilities. However, that is not her fault and I do not think she should be ridiculed for it. Has she capitalized on it? Absolutely. Who wouldn’t? Happens all the time. Just ask the dude who sings “Gangnam Style.”

The media hypes up the “next” such and such on a daily basis. It happens all the time in football, ie Ryan Leaf, JaMarcus Russell, Reggie Bush. It happens all the time in basketball, ie Kwame Brown, Adam Morrison, Michael Olowokandi. Do I need to continue? What has happened to Danica is no different than what has been happening for years. The difference is she wears makeup and everyone I listed does not.

No one knows what type of career Danica will ultimately have but I find it deplorable that members of the media, especially women, have taken it upon themselves to call her out for what she has not done opposed to what she has done. Yes, I know she has participated in almost 200 races and has only been declared the victor in one. By society’s standards she has failed. In my opinion, she has succeeded. She is participating in a male dominated sport, one where there is not a separate league for women. Her peers do not look like her. Just because she has not won a lot does not mean she does not have an impact. I think her not winning speaks louder than winning does. It shows us that even when the odds are against her she is willing to get in the ring and fight even if she knows she has little chance of winning. That is what life is all about, right? Getting knocked down and continuing to get back up to continue the fight.

Even if Danica never wins another race, she has already helped pave the way for female drivers that will follow in her footsteps. The truth of the matter is not everyone will make it to the mountaintop. Some of are here to make the path easier for others to follow. That could be Danica’s purpose. Judging by her actions, I think she is ok with that. And for that, she deserves a round of applause.

Until next time…TOODELLS.

Follow me on Twittter @KassieNette

Oh so random….

Oh, just a little glimpse of my current thoughts….

1. I am so ready for Sunday!!! My 9ers vs. Russell Wilson’s Seahawks!!! GO NINERRRRRRS!!! And don’t act surprised. I’m a Niners Faithful even if the opposing QB is a Wolfpack alum.

2. I still do not understand this whole shoe release phenomenon. Sleep is waaaaaaaaay too important to me to wait in the cold for some rubber and shoelaces.

3. I like RG3. Those braids, not so much.

4. The NHL should just cancel their whole season and focus on getting it together for next season. Got everybody “on ice.”

5. The Beef O’Brady’s Bowl is tonight. HAHAHAHAHA!

6. Before Sunday’s game, Adrian Peterson needed either 509 or 599(I think it was 599) to break Eric Dickerson’s single season rushing record. Some guys debated me and said he could not do it. I said he could. AP had 212 yards rushing Sunday. Guys still doubting me. SMH. Ya’ll gone learn!!

7. I have yet to watch an NBA game this season. I flip to TNT to see my man Sager!!!

8. Want a good workout? You Tube some MC Hammer videos and get your dance on. My thighs are still a little sore from that workout.

9. My nephew turns 3 tomorrow. Those years went by fast!!! HAPPY BIRFDAY BOODA!! Auntie loves you!!!

10. There is no 10. I only wanted to do 9 :-}.

If you are not following me on Twitter, do so!! The name is @KassieNette.

 

Until next time….TOODELLS!!